A Statement on
Marriage by Lutherans For Life
(Adopted by the National Lutherans For Life Board of Directors
on February 21, 2004)
In Godís "very good" creation,
there was one thing "not good." "It is not good for the man to be
alone" (Genesis 2:18). It was not companionship that the man needed. It
was relationship, a relationship that would be like Godís relationship
with him. Adam may have found a companion as all the animals paraded
before him, but he found no one suitable for this kind of relationship
(Genesis 2:20). He who bore the image of God needed someone who also
bore the image of God in order to have a God-like relationship. So God
made a woman. She was created in Godís image (Genesis 1:27). She was
like the man (Genesis 2:23). She was different from the man. She was
created at a different time, in a different way, and for a different
purpose (Genesis 2:22, 2:15, 3:20). It was that difference that made
possible the kind of relationship God wanted.
Adam and Eve were capable of becoming
one flesh and in that relationship could mirror their relationship with
their Creator. God brought them together in this relationship called
marriage (Genesis 2:24). Marriage was a part of all that was "good" in
Godís perfect creation. Marriage was not given as an institution to
curb sin. There was no sin. Marriage was given as the foundation for
the one flesh relationship.
Marriage was also the relationship
through which procreation would continue. "Be fruitful and increase in
number" (Genesis 1:28). Marriage is to produce children. The effects of
sin upon Godís biological process for procreation sometimes makes it
difficult or impossible for a marriage to fulfill this blessing.
However, barring such unfortunate circumstances, children are to be the
result of this one flesh union.
Sin has certainly brought problems to
marriage. The reality of problematic marriages, however, does not
abdicate the essence of what marriage is. Jesus makes this clear. "But
at the beginning of creation God Ďmade them male and female.í ĎFor this
reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his
wife, and the two will become one flesh.í So they are no longer two but
one" (Mark 10:6-8). What God intended marriage to be in the beginning,
He still intends marriage to be.
Throughout Scripture marriage is a
picture of Godís relationship to His people. God is Israelís "husband"
(Isaiah 54:5, Jeremiah 3:14, Hosea 2:19-20). As such, He rejoices over
His bride (Isaiah 62:5). Jesus is pictured as the bridegroom and the
Church His bride (Rev. 19:7). It is His unconditional love for His
bride the Church that caused Him to give Himself up for her (Ephesians
For Life affirms the great blessing of the institution of marriage as
revealed in Godís holy Word. We affirm that marriage is a God-given
institution between a man and a woman. We affirm that this one flesh
union reflects our relationship with our Creator and Redeemer. We
affirm that it is the means God has chosen for procreation. Based on
this, we are compelled to humble ourselves before God and ask His
forgiveness for all the times we have dishonored marriage by
trivializing its importance, by failing to reflect Christís love in our
marriages, and by our failure to connect the importance of marriage and
our relationship to God.
Based on this, we are also compelled to reject homosexual unions as
contrary to the Word of God. The "sameness" of homosexuals prevents a
one-flesh union as well as the possibility of the procreation of
children. Such unions do not and cannot reflect our relationship with
our Creator and Redeemer. Such unions are based on a lie rather than
the Word of God (Romans 1:25) and cannot constitute a marriage.
Marriage is founded upon the promise publicly exchanged between one man
and one woman. Similarly, our Redeemer binds Himself to His Church with
His promise, "I am with you always" (Matthew 28:20); "Never will I
leave you; never will I forsake you" (Hebrews 13:5). Living together
without the public promise of mutual love, respect, and fidelity
dishonors marriage and is fornication. Adultery breaks the marriage
vow, whether by marital infidelity, abuse, or abandonment. We must
reject as contrary to the Word of God these and all practices which
would not keep the marriage bed pure Ė impurity of thought, word, or
deed (e. g., the use of pornography). We also reject as contrary to the
Word of God any reproductive technologies that violate or circumvent
the institution of marriage (e.g. donated eggs or sperm and cloning).
believe, as God says, "Marriage should be honored by all" (Hebrews
13:4). May God give us the faith, wisdom, and courage to bring honor to
this great blessing from Him.